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  #1  
Unread 3rd July 2012, 10:37 PM
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Why am I so disliked?

I consider myself an atheist and while I am not particular public about it, when it does come up there is a very quick and obvious change in the way a person treats/converses/approaches me. I have even lost close relationships with people whom I had a long standing friendship with until they found out that I wasn't a Christian. I am a kind, generous, honest, and loving person and yet I find that I am often disliked and/or feared simply because I am an atheist.
I did some looking around and even found a research study showing that Atheists are the most hated and distrusted minority in America. I'm just not sure how to handle this. Like I said before I am good person. I have moral standards, a warm heart, and am friendly with any and all. So what is the problem?
Any comments, advice, etc?
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  #2  
Unread 4th July 2012, 12:22 AM
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I don't know why you would be disliked.

Christians are told by Paul, "I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people— not at all meaning the sexually immoral of this world, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world."
1 Cor 5:9-10

I mention this passage because atheism is a form of idolatry. We are not told to disassociate with the idolaters in this world. That's not a slam at you personally in any way, but rather an honest assessment of the faith of atheism you've chosen to embrace.
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Unread 4th July 2012, 12:38 AM
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Hello

Originally Posted by cburden View Post
I have even lost close relationships with people whom I had a long standing friendship with until they found out that I wasn't a Christian. I am a kind, generous, honest, and loving person and yet I find that I am often disliked and/or feared simply because I am an atheist.

Not sure why that is the case that you've lost friendships. No one should dislike you. But you've only given us nonspecifics so it's difficult to give you a solid answer.


I did some looking around and even found a research study showing that Atheists are the most hated and distrusted minority in America.

On the internet we can find anything, so as the validity of what you found...


I have moral standards, a warm heart, and am friendly with any and all. So what is the problem?
Any comments, advice, etc?
Atheism, whatever form it may be, has carried a stigma throughout history. But I certainly see a shift in greater acceptance of atheism in modern society/culture (especially culture).

I'd say to you to keep on treating others like you want yourself treated. And if someone else treats you poorly, then they are the one with the problem and they are wrong to do so. Just my opinion.

Oh, and I just saw that you live in KY. So that should tell you something there.
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Unread 4th July 2012, 01:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Faulty View Post
I don't know why you would be disliked.

Christians are told by Paul, "I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people— not at all meaning the sexually immoral of this world, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world."
1 Cor 5:9-10

I mention this passage because atheism is a form of idolatry. We are not told to disassociate with the idolaters in this world. That's not a slam at you personally in any way, but rather an honest assessment of the faith of atheism you've chosen to embrace.
I'm not clear on why atheism would be considered idolatry. I do not worship any gods, idols, objects, etc. of any kind.
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Unread 4th July 2012, 01:54 AM
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I'm not sure what specifics I could give other than the fact that many friends and acquaintances alike suddenly had a different attitude toward me once it was revealed that I was not a believer. People who were once kind and friendly toward me began disassociating themselves with me and avoiding contact as if atheism means that I am an immoral heathen or some such thing. But I'm the same sweet, compassionate person that I have always been.

There were many articles and blogs that I found when I researched this issue but the studies and polls that I was referring to were published through reputable universities.

And I think your right, it is likely in part due to being in the South. But of American citizens over 70% of them identify themselves as Christians so yeah, I do feel somewhat isolated in my own country. I think it's sad that being an atheist, though it is technically illegal, can hinder you from getting a job or running for political office.
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Unread 4th July 2012, 02:10 AM
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Originally Posted by cburden View Post
I'm not sure what specifics I could give other than the fact that many friends and acquaintances alike suddenly had a different attitude toward me once it was revealed that I was not a believer. People who were once kind and friendly toward me began disassociating themselves with me and avoiding contact as if atheism means that I am an immoral heathen or some such thing. But I'm the same sweet, compassionate person that I have always been.

There were many articles and blogs that I found when I researched this issue but the studies and polls that I was referring to were published through reputable universities.

And I think your right, it is likely in part due to being in the South. But of American citizens over 70% of them identify themselves as Christians so yeah, I do feel somewhat isolated in my own country. I think it's sad that being an atheist, though it is technically illegal, can hinder you from getting a job or running for political office.
Doesn't matter how you choose to identify yourself, there will be some people who hate you for it. It's that mob mentality, like a flock of chooks. They single out the runt and pick on it. I once lost a job opportunity because I mentioned I am Christian, I know better now, how and when to skillfully raise the flag. Living in a world of such diversity we all must learn to be tolerant of others. Just be careful that you don't begin to adopt their attitude, you could very well be a better Christian role model than they are. There is a verse about this that I read just today! Here it is:

19 When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, 21 envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God.
22 But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!

Notice that hostility is not a demonstration of the Holy Spirit. Christians have demons too you know, and there seems to be a lot of condescension in American Christianity. You would find NZ a completely different world, very accommodating to atheist's.
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Unread 4th July 2012, 03:17 AM
what are you waiting for?

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quote=cburden;60893242]
People who were once kind and friendly toward me began disassociating themselves with me and avoiding contact as if atheism means that I am an immoral heathen or some such thing. But I'm the same sweet, compassionate person that I have always been.



Most people dont have an understanding of what modern atheist philosophy is. Atheism still carries the connotation of deviance, subversiveness and being the devils pawn, espescially in the Bible belt. What people don't understand the move away from, both emotionally and personally (humans associate with other humans of similar race, creed , mindset, personality, etc.) Therefore they will distance themselves from you and you will certainly not be embraced.



There were many articles and blogs that I found when I researched this issue but the studies and polls that I was referring to were published through reputable universities.



Well reputable university is a relative term. Higher education is assuredly biased against Christianity. There is an element of agenda.



I think it's sad that being an atheist, though it is technically illegal, can hinder you from getting a job or running for political office.[/quote]



Try and get a job as a professing Christian in a university. As for politicians they have no beliefs beyond egocentric beliefs and will follow whatever societal whim will get them elected.

Society is moving toward atheism (IMO it is already there) and culture is definately there already.

No one should shun you or mistreat you. I am very sorry if that has happened. You deserve to be loved like any person deserves to be loved. Might I suggest that you pose the same questions to your former colleages as you did in your OP. I am sorry for your troubles.
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Unread 4th July 2012, 03:35 AM
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People can only use logic and reason to come to conclusions when everyone involved agrees on the premises. As an atheist, you no longer agree on a centrally critical one. And this results in a very different perspective on any issue.

For you, God demanding the Amalek's being wiped out is an unthinkable atrocity. To the religious mind, because and just precisely because it was commanded by God, the genocide was righteous.

Consider a martyr, and how absolutely alien your mind is to hers.


The alien quality is one reason. The other is a bunch of other negative traits that seem to have high comorbidity with atheism.
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Unread 4th July 2012, 03:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Tomas de Torquemada View Post
People can only use logic and reason to come to conclusions when everyone involved agrees on the premises. As an atheist, you no longer agree on a centrally critical one. And this results in a very different perspective on any issue.

For you, God demanding the Amalek's being wiped out is an unthinkable atrocity. To the religious mind, because and just precisely because it was commanded by God, the genocide was righteous.

Consider a martyr, and how absolutely alien your mind is to hers.


The alien quality is one reason. The other is a bunch of other negative traits that seem to have high comorbidity with atheism.
Maybe it might be better digested with use of more common language.
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Unread 4th July 2012, 11:54 AM
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Originally Posted by oi_antz View Post
Doesn't matter how you choose to identify yourself, there will be some people who hate you for it. It's that mob mentality, like a flock of chooks. They single out the runt and pick on it. I once lost a job opportunity because I mentioned I am Christian, I know better now, how and when to skillfully raise the flag. Living in a world of such diversity we all must learn to be tolerant of others. Just be careful that you don't begin to adopt their attitude, you could very well be a better Christian role model than they are. There is a verse about this that I read just today! Here it is:

19 When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, 21 envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God.
22 But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!

Notice that hostility is not a demonstration of the Holy Spirit. Christians have demons too you know, and there seems to be a lot of condescension in American Christianity. You would find NZ a completely different world, very accommodating to atheist's.

Thank you. I suppose your right, there will always be people like that out there. NZ sounds nice. I'll be moving to Germany next fall which I here is also more tolerant of nonbelievers.
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